Tuesday, October 16, 2012
Picky, Picky, Picky.....
Modern office updates this year were that there was a brand new shiny "Now Serving" box on the wall which shows how long or rather how many more paper tabs have been pulled before you have the honor of being called for review.
In years past they handed out a well worn paper tab with numbers on them and then announced the number to the waiting masses to be summoned to the desk. Also there is a TV installed to watch your current snowy novellas while you wait.
Al of a sudden, a medium loud electronic sounder woke my semi-slumber to attention as we got up to enter the chasm of ridiculousness.
There are many things that life in Mexico can make one shake their head to the point of hair removal by velocity this trip was going to prove to be the one.
In years past the only issue we have ever had was a few years ago my wife's passport name and the name on her FM3 didn't match because the FM3 didn't have my last name. Even though this had worked for years in the past we were privileged to get a clerk that was going to follow the letter of the law which would have required getting an apostate and some other ream of paperwork to resolve.
Seeing another clerk about a week later, got it resolved in less than 5 minutes.
Well, we have been going to the immigration office here in Morelia for many years, this office is their 3rd location in our history. I experience goes back to when they were a small office of very friendly and reachable people, to the point of bringing back a requested ream of copy paper to speed up our processing time.....talk about a "bite"......
At that time the FM3's took about a month, since the whole file was sent to DF for processing.
Back to the story....,
So anyway, we filled out our forms on the Internet page the night before, checked them for accuracy and got our file folder together with copies of our passports, FM3 cards, bank statements, letters of request, basic information etc....
As the clerk checked my wife's application and dutifully checked each line off with a pencil check mark, the operation performed pretty smoothly....only one minor issue that of the color of her hair.
Then came my file.....
All was well until we came to one line.
We do not have a street address since we live out in the sticks.....
The location is km, such and such on the Patzcuaro,Tacambaro road.
It was typed as such. on my wife's form which he double check from the previous years application.
But on mine previous years application it was typed as Patzcuaro-Tacambaro road.
In the past most of the clerks would have taken their pen and put in a hyphen, or as a few years ago, logged on and redid the application for us as we stood there in line.
End of subject, all is well, pay your fees, get fee receipt copies, come back in a week.....
Not so senior.
So, I need to go down the street and print out a new form with the correction.
Of I go, to an internet cafe , come back in 10 minutes and sit and wait while the clerk is talking to the next victim of bureaucracy.
That little discussion was about an hour and 15 minutes.
Then I got to two forms for the bank payment, no problem there is now a bank directly across the street now which makes it easier, or at least a lot easier than in the past.
Come back and wait.
After about 20 minutes more we get all our paperwork processed, and we're on our way.
This go around has been the longest we have every had in waiting time and BS time from a clerk. Usually the average office visit runs about an hour or so. Yesterday it was about 4 hours.
Thank you Mr. Bureaucrat.......
We will be back next week to pick up our new cards. Usually that takes about 15 minutes.
I'll let you know how long that will take, we'll keep our fingers crossed.
NEWS AT ELEVEN......
As we are town and we take the road by Costco/Mega, and past that a ways I make the U turn on the road going to Patzcuaro by Walmart.... blocking the road to Patzcuaro there is a Federal Police car, blocking the road.....
No problem, we will go up the street towards Costco and go through the colonia to get to the road home.....
Problem,.......that street has a Police car blocking the road.....
Knowing that there is only one other possibility to getting out of Dodge, the road that goes to La Esperanza. But that may be blocked also, not knowing what was going on. Doing that will add about at least 30 minutes to the drive home on the crappy back road. So we decided to return back to the centro and get some coffee and maybe have dinner.
2 hours later we figured it was safe to try again.
As we approached Costco we saw the helicopter flying around and the noticed the traffic backing up again. But now the libramento was closed off at the Walmart overpass.
But it appeared that traffic from Walmart was going south.
As we maneuvered around the Walmart light, we started moving and the police cars were starting to leave.
Further down the road by the bakery we passed about 200 or so police with their riot shields walking back to their buses.
At that point we finally were back on our road and with very little traffic made it home in about a half hour.
Always an experience.........